Monday, November 2, 2009

Shades of Gray

It was easy then to tell truth from lies

Thursday, I posted a video from former Senators Bob Graham and Jim Talent pressing for research into new ways to develop vaccines.  It seemed to ask a good question . . . why is America using old technology instead of developing new methods?  

That video lists four specific methods of vaccine development.  Those are cell-culture production, recombinant antigen, virus-like particles, and DNA vaccines.

Questions were raised about whether I had lost my mind posting this video, which was said to stand in support of technology using aborted fetal cell lines.  The question was legitimate and, frankly, I didn't know enough about the specifics to take a position on it one way or the other.

Do the methods listed involve aborted fetal tissue, cell lines of such origin, or fetal stem cells?

At the suggestion of a good friend, I raised that question to Children of God for Life (an excellent site with a great cause, link here).  Here's the response:

This is a yes and no answer I am afraid because all of the above methods COULD involve aborted fetal cell lines - or they could be done using completely moral sources.  To give you an example, there are H1N1 and regular flu vaccines in development that are not yet FDA approved using cell culture.  Some manufacturers like [redacted by SLC] are using aborted fetal cell line PER C6 taken from an 18 week gestation baby's retinal tissue.  Others are developing theirs using canine kidney, monkey kidney and even caterpillar cells as their cell culture method.

Anytime DNA or recombinant DNA or VLPs are used there is always a chance it involves immoral sources for the virus growth or delivery method - but it could be done morally as well.

So, it seems that it is possible to develop a better, faster, and more modern method for vaccine development without sacrificing morality, or children.  But aborted tissue can be used in these methods as well.

At this point I'm going to have to admit that I'm out of my element.  It would seem to make sense to research new and better ways to develop vaccines.  But only so long as fetal tissue is not used.

So here I am, pro-science, pro-technology, but more importantly and standing before either of those . . . I am Pro-Life.

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